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Mike G.
Mike G., Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 7103
Experience:  Proven Professional 46 years Experience
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The outlet only has two black wires (no ground) (knob & pole)

Customer Question

the outlet only has two black wires (no ground) (knob & pole) the dimmer switch has two black wires & a green ground when I turn dimmer switch on it blows the fuse
JA: Sometimes electrical issues that that you think will be really complicated end up being easy to fix. The Electrician I'm going to connect you with knows all the tricks and shortcuts. Tell me a bit more about what's going on so we can help you best.
Customer: fuse keeps blowing when I turn on dimmer. replaced dimmer but same thing happens outlet has no ground and dimmer has two black wires
JA: Is there anything else the Electrician should be aware of?
Customer: no
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Electrician about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Electrical
Expert:  Kevin replied 6 months ago.
Hello and welcome to Just Answer. My name is ***** ***** I will be happy to assist you with your electrical question. 1) 1st off, it is an electrical code violation to control a wall receptacle by a dimmer switch. A wall receptacle is either always live or switched by a regular ON/OFF snap switch and never using a dimmer switch. 2) How many wire and the wires colors inside the wall receptacle box? 3) Do you have either a 2 wire lead AC voltage tester or an AC voltmeter available?
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
The dimmer switch was here 30 years ago when I moved here. There are 2 black wires inside the box. I do have a voltmeter but I've never used it. By the way, the house is 120 years old.
Expert:  Kevin replied 6 months ago.
Thanks for the replies. 1) You need to de-install the dimmer switch and replace it with a regular ON/OFF snap switch. Whoever installed the dimmer switch to control a wall receptacle did not know what they were doing and this presents a code violation. Dimmer switches only control lighting fixtures and nothing else. If the dimmer switch contains 2 wires, replace it with a single pole ON/OFF snap switch. 2) Does the home contain any 3 prong grounded receptacles? 3) What is the existing wiring scheme to the receptacle box? Metal conduit or a 2 wire cable?
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
the dimmer switch is for lighting fixture
Expert:  Kevin replied 6 months ago.
You originally mentioned an outlet. An outlet is typically a wall receptacle. You didn't answer my other questions. Therefore I am unable to assist you and I will opt out of the question and place it back to the open board. No need to reply back to me. You will be notified once another expert picks up the question.
Expert:  Mike G. replied 6 months ago.
Hi, I'm Mike G and I'll be assisting you. Connect the new dimmer switch to the 2 black wires. Use the black and red on the dimmer and cap the second red if there are 3 wires on the dimmer.

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